On two different weekends in May, the ICAP secondary school celebrated 50 years of providing quality Christian education to students in Guatemala, many of whom have been from the Los Pinos Children’s Village which is located on adjoining land.
The first event occurred from May 7–9 and included the participation of about 50 pioneering alumni from the 1970s. The festivities began with a procession of alumni carrying a torch. The first student of the institution, Antonio Peralta, oversaw the lighting of the torch.
The second event, the one traditionally celebrated, was held May 26–29. In addition to students and staff of ICAP, there were about one hundred and fifty visitors, mostly alumni and former staff. On Friday, much to everyone’s delight, staff and students prepared a food fair focused on delicious national cuisine. Sabbath activities included special guest speakers, a concert, and testimonies. Sunday was full of sporting activity and ended with a lovely gala dinner that evening. For those who may not be aware, ICAP is formally known as ‘Instituto de Capacitación Adventista del Petén.’ It provides coursework or vocational training options for students in the following areas: basic education, accounting, computers, biology, early childhood education, auto mechanics, and agronomy. ICAP was originally operated by the Adventist mission. In 1991, ICC agreed to assume the management of the school. This year, ICAP has an enrollment of 219 students.
Thanks to the vision and determination of ICAP founders, the Bechtels and Ira Nation, ICAP continues to provide an excellent Christian education that blesses not only Los Pinos children, but also a wider collection of youth who live in Guatemala. And in words taken from 1 Samuel 7: 12 and quoted by ICAP director, Mario René Bonilla, “We say, ‘so far the Lord has helped us.’”